Season 1, Episodes 1-5
Well. This was something different. Lovecraft country really is a horror done like nothing else we’ve seen before. I’ve never seen a show quite like this, and it’s uniqueness brings in a certain rare charm that isn’t too often. Lovecraft Country at its core follows Atticus Black and his friend Letitia during the 1950s who both confront racism and monsters. Based On the bestselling novel by Matt Ruff, the show really leaves some thought provoking moment,
While it’s still such a unique show, the show takes a lot from another one of Jordan Peeles recent successes, The Twilight Zone, in that each episode has a new horror that main cast faces and but Lovecraft Country also has an overarching that plays just as big a role as the self contained horror that each episode has. It’s a really nice blend and a formula that is so rarely seen done well on television. The set design and costumes are also something worth a mention, they are done to such a well done degree that it really encapsulates the setting of 1950s America. It definitely helps significantly that it has the feeling of a show from that era and yet also is complimented by some great special effects.
Of course, the true standout of the show lies within its casting, and each of the main characters, already in its first two episodes are rich with development and motives that are worth investing into. The standout of course is the amazing Jurnee Smollett-Bell who plays the fantastically charismatic Letitia. Throughout the episodes provide we see the ups and downs she faces as being African-American woman living in one of America’s darkest and most racist eras. You really get a true sense of who she is and you feel like you know her personally by the time the the third episode finishes , through her desires and her struggles. I was also impressed by Johnathon Majors (who’s just coming off the fantastic Da 5 Bloods on Netflix) who played the main character, Atticus. As someone who really didn’t know where they belonged growing up and resorted to to reading science fiction books (or in my case, comic books) whenever he could, it was a feeling I was always too familiar and that awkwardness was perfectly captured between him and the main writer/show runner, Misha Green.
And of course, what’s a horror review if we don’t mention how scary it is (and let me say this, it is incredibly frightening). The tension was always at a high and you could sense when there was a problem just around the corner. Unlike many horror shows and movies (particularly ones that deal with the supernatural), it doesn’t focus on just the abnormal elements to be scary, but also the normal which in this case is the abhorrent racism against the African-American community during the later stages of the Jim Crow Law era. If anything it really shows how just as scary both were and the comparisons were really significant. This was particularly evident in almost every episode where the supernatural and racism morphed into one big threat (even if both sources were different). It certainly leaves a lot of food for thought.
In overall, I really think this will be another major hit for the network with one of the strongest first batch of episodes I’ve ever seen from them. I can’t wait to see what everyone else thinks on August 16th when the first episode airs at 10 EST.